Wednesday, 20 April 2016

The Dog And The Wolf

How often does the title of one work show up as a phrase in another? Volume IV of The King Of Ys by Poul and Karen Anderson, The Dog And The Wolf, concludes with a verse which ends:

"...between the Dog and the Wolf there is only the Law."
-Poul and Karen Anderson, The King Of Ys: The Dog And The Wolf (London, 1989), p. 504.

In Prince Of Sparta by Jerry Pournelle and SM Stirling, when Colonel Peter Owensford of Falkenberg's Legion sees the rebel leader, Skida Thibodeau, he thinks:

"The dog and the wolf..."
-Jerry Pournelle and SM Stirling, The Prince (New York, 2002), p. 967.

The Legion observes the Laws of War whereas the rebels attack civilians and kill prisoners. The Legion is a guard dog whereas the rebels are wolves. Thibodeau talks about "Revolution" but meanwhile thinks about interstellar expansion:

"...when the Democratic Republic started building up its navy." (p. 965)

"Revolution" means a society where no one builds navies or it means nothing. But I meant to focus on the significance of "the dog and the wolf," not to return us to the meaning of "Revolution." Having just returned from the monthly gathering of our modest sf group, I must now read Pournelle's and Stirling's account of the meeting between leaders of the two sides in the Spartan civil war.

3 comments:

  1. Kaor, Paul!

    One of the characters in PRINCE OF SPARTA uses the phrase "the dog and the wolf"? That must have been S.M. Stirling! He too is a devoted fan of Poul Anderson and told us on this very blog that he adopted many of the themes and tropes found in Anderson's works.

    Thibodeau's ambition of building up a space navy for her so called "democratic republic" reminded me of what Lenin and Stalin in the USSR, building up armies and fleets and menacing or conquering their neighbors.

    And HONORABLE soldiers try to minimize harm to civilians. That should go without saying!

    Sean

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  2. Yup, Skilly had the 20th century in mind.

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    1. Dear Mr. Stirling,

      Exactly! I'm reminded of how the Russian commander of the Co-Dominium enclave in Sparta City commented that the hideous Thibodeau reminded him far too well of the callous or fanatical ideologues who had so gruesomely tormented Mother Russia.

      Sean

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